Runners throughout the country were relieved the latest measures introduced to curb the spread of Covid-19 haven’t prevented them from going out for daily solo training sessions.
No one wanted to be reduced to following the example of Toulouse resident Elisha Nochomovitz, who mind-bogglingly ran a full marathon on the balcony of his flat.
He completed the 26.2 miles challenge by jogging back and forth on the 23ft-long balcony for six hours 48mins.
Such drastic total lockdown measures haven’t been deemed necessary in this country so far, although group training sessions are banned.
That has led local running clubs to dream up a number of inventive ways of keeping their members engaged.
Tammy Wilson, a leading light in the progressive JS Kintore club, is promoting a number of initiatives which have captured the imagination of her colleagues.
She said: “We normally have club sessions on a Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday for adults.
“So, for each of these days I have been giving some ideas on our club facebook page suggesting what people can do.
“I have put on short videos showing me demonstrating a warm-up exercise routines and I’ve also been posting a series of run sessions.
“To add a competitive element to it, people can get one point if they do the warm-up and another point if they do the run. There’s a bonus point if they get family members to join in.
“We also have walking groups on a Tuesday and a Thursday and they have been given the similar challenges.
“I keep a scoreboard to see how many points everyone is getting and it has become unbelievably popular. It’s certainly keeping me busy.
“So many people are joining in and the runners are even doing the walking sessions to gain more points. They are just so competitive. If this continues, I reckon everyone is going to be fitter than before.”
A significant number of JS Kintore members had been planning to run in the London marathon or one of the other major spring races, all of which have now been cancelled or postponed.
Wilson shares their disappointment and was planning to offer a possible alternative should the current restrictions ease.
She said: “We were planning to hold an informal marathon run locally to compensate for that.
“It was going to be fairly low key and limited to 50 runners who would be well spread out to maintain the social distancing rules.
“It would be a great way of maintaining the motivation of those people who have been training for a marathon.
“That is obviously on hold, but perhaps we can do it at a later date.”